25/03/2020 2:10:40 p.m.

Wednesday 25 March 2020


Rotorua and Taupo Hospitals have implemented a visitor lock-down with strict conditions in place to protect staff and patients. 

Lakes DHB staff along with all DHBs are dealing with an outbreak of COVID-19 (novel coronavirus). It is likely COVID-19 will become widespread, posing major risks for our population, particularly elderly and vulnerable people who have other medical conditions. While COVID-19 will be mild for many people it will be severe and potentially fatal for others.

There are now further changes to the visitor policy, which was altered last week, and these will applyto all Lakes DHB patient areas on all sites from midnight.

As Alert 4 requires all of the community to be in lock-down no visitors are to be allowed into the hospital facilities in Rotorua and Taupo other than the following circumstances:

• Patients who are palliative and receiving end-of-life care can have one consistent visitor/family member.
• Only one parent or guardian is able to accompany any hospitalised child in either the Children’s Unit or Emergency Department.
• Only one support person is to accompany any woman in labour.
• Should a patient be a confirmed COVID or suspicious COVID patient then NO visitors are allowed.

A consistent visitor must stay with the patient. If this person leaves the hospital then they may not re-enter. They are not free to come and go.

Staff will ensure meals are provided for these visitors and assist with sleeping arrangements if possible.

All visitors must wear Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) as required and adhere to all requests in respect to infection control procedures.

Patients are encouraged to talk regularly with friends and family via phone or by facetime and similar applications. Staff will be available for condition updates to whānau using phone (or facetime) as whānau require.

Access to Rotorua Hospital will be through the main entrance only. At Taupo Hospital the sole point of entry into the hospital is through the emergency department.

Lakes DHB has not made this decision without considerable thought and acknowledges the new rules will be upsetting to families and friends. Please be assured that these arrangements have been put in place to protect patients, staff, visitors, families and the wider community in order to be able to continue to provide essential health services.

These arrangements will remain in force until further notice.


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